The D.C. Streetcar launched two years ago, and yet the district is considering a plan to replace its vehicles.
In responses prepared for a D.C. Council hearing Tuesday, the District Department of Transportation said there have already been problems with getting spare parts to complete repairs in a timely manner.
WTOP-FM reports one manufacturer is out of business and another is overseas.
DDOT officials wrote that the long-term parts availability will likely require reverse engineering parts. The agency said it's exploring a strategy of acquiring vehicles in the future that considers the feasibility of disposal of the current fleet.
Federal Transit Administration guidelines set a streetcar's typical lifespan at more than 30 years.
Long-term budget plans call for at least $25 million in new streetcars to be purchased over several years.